In an upcoming article from PC&D’s Welcome Guide: Express Exterior/Flex-Serve Edition, titled “Soak in the Savings” by Charles Brady, the author explains how towel-exchange programs can help carwash owners boost profits.

Brady goes on to explain other benefits — such as the differences between cotton and microfiber towels — and best practices for towel use, including theft prevention.

In fact, one of the key best practices that you can use to extend the life and effectiveness of your carwash’s towels is to implement a color-coding system so that cross-contamination, misuse, damage, training requirements and much more are minimized or eliminated altogether.

Below is a basic example of a color-coded towel system for the wash process that you can use at your new carwash. Remember to train your new employees to strictly follow the program’s guidelines and never use a different color in a non-designated area. Posting signage around the wash, especially in employee-only areas, will help increase awareness of the program.

  • Black: wheel and engine cleaning; other grease- or oil-prone auto areas (if applicable)
  • Blue: windows (interior and exterior)
  • Green: tire shine (chemical applications)
  • Orange: interior cleaning (chemical applications)
  • Purple: towel rental exchange program for customers (limited uses)
  • Red: exterior surfaces (drying/wiping, no chemicals)
  • Yellow: interior wiping (no chemicals)